Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Bensenville Public Library Grounds

The Bensenville Community Library is a public, state tax-funded library that serves all patrons in the Bensenville Community.

It is located on a back road of Bensenville, right next to Blackhawk Middle School and only a few blocks away from Fenton High School.

The building itself is a single-story, ranch-style building: very long with only one floor.

I decided to report on this library because I lived in Bensenville for three years and I had always liked the Bensenville Library's cozy atmosphere.

In front, the brick walkway is protected by wooden shelter, still decorated for the holidays.

There are also benches along the walkway for patrons to enjoy outdoor reading during finer weather.

The front doors are wood, surrounded by cobblestone and glass. The theme of wood, cobblestone, and tinted glass is prevalent throughout the entire library.

The library's address, 200 S. Church, is displayed in the upper corner of the door. The library hours are printed in gold on the tinted glass:

Monday-Thursday 9 AM-9 PM
Friday 9 AM-6 PM
Saturday 9 AM-5 PM
Sunday 1 PM-5 PM

Even the bike rack is encased in cobblestone to add to the rustic atmosphere of the library grounds.

In the back of the library is a garden, viewable from the windows inside the building. This garden is aptly named the "Garden of Knowledge."
The statue is a casting of Robert Burns, a Scottish author and poet. It was donated to the library by a Bensenville family.
The photo does not do the garden justice; it is truly beautiful in person.

Bensenville Community Library Interior

In the entry vestibule of the library, there is a wood and glass-encased bulletin board displaying library news as well as general community news.

The library itself is usually quiet and not very crowded.

This is the front circulation desk. Here, I spoke with Joan Baader, the Head of Circulation, who was very helpful and informative.

The front desk displays pamphlets, leaflets, and recommended books in front.
Behind the desk, the back offices are secluded from the public by a wall of woven wood.
Above the offices hangs a woven blanket depicting landmarks within Bensenville.

Here, Mrs. Baader expanded on the finer points of library, including the library's mission statement:

"We believe that learning is lifelong and that all people deserve opportunities to pursue learning. Our purpose is to serve the informational, educational, cultural and recreational needs of all the district's residents, and we endeavor to support a community of readers. To enhance our purpose, we strive to be a dynamic, vital force in the development of the community, to extend services to users and non-users through both traditional and progressive methods, and to maintain a warm, friendly and people oriented atmosphere."

Joan also mentioned that the library had no outstanding problems with vandalism; the worst the librarians usually have to deal with are students who come into the library with attitudes.

Directly across from the circulation desk is a lounge area with a cobblestone fireplace, comfortable couches and chairs, and wooden tables.

In addition to decorative greenery and beautiful stone tile flooring, magazines and periodicals adorn the tables.

The windows here offer a gorgeous view of the garden.

There is also a wooden chess table and chairs located in this section of the library for patron use.

Next to the circulation desk is a small multimedia collection.

This includes two revolving racks of CDs and one revolving case of casette tapes.

These CDs and casettes include everything from educational and language topics to popular and instrumental music.

The books are organized according to the Dewey Decimal Classification System, as denoted by the signs.

Also, the library is sponsoring a program called "52 Books, 52 Weeks." In this program, patrons can sign up to receive a reading log in which they can record the 52 books they will read in one year. However, the main goal of the program is not to force yourself to read a book per week, but simply to make reading a part of your weekly routine.

The books are contained in wooden shelves and organized simply by call number, not by genre.

Only reference books are kept in a separate section.

This ornate grandfather clock is one of the many details that give this library the warm and homey atmosphere it exudes.

The library also has tables and chairs where patrons and students can work on projects and assignments in the quiet library setting.

In the back of the library, a glass and wooden case holds original Bensenville antiques such as historical newspaper articles, objects, and antique press cameras.

There are also framed photographs on the wall from memorable periods in Bensenville's history, including memorable landmarks and family portraits.
The Bensenville Library strives to commemorate the history of its own town.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Technology in the Library

As found in most of the libraries we have visited during this course, technology is becoming more and more prevalent in this field.

At Bensenville Library, computers are available for patron use, offering Internet access, Microsoft Word works, and even printing for an additional fee.

This pod in the library contains 6 computers. Patrons have a one-hour limit on the computers if there are other patrons waiting to use one.

In addition, the library offers a separate computer lab with additional computers, including one set in Spanish for the many Hispanic users in Bensenville.

In the back, there are additional tables for group work or studying.
Bensenville Library also holds ESL (English as a Second Language) classes twice a week through the college of DuPage in the library for the large majority of Spanish-speakers in Bensenville.
The library also has an online catalog, and books can be renewed online or by phone.

Even the children's section has four computers with monitored Internet access and educational games, complete with kid-sized stools.

Benenville Library Children's Section

The children's section occupies a third of the library's total area.

Books in this area are arranged according to reading level, with tables and stools for children to study or read at.

I thought this sign was cute and very appropriate for winter!
Currently, the library is running a children's winter reading program in which children keep a log of the books they read, and they can win prizes!

The children also have additional tables to work at and a very comfortable couch to relax and enjoy some reading!

An attractive fishtank dwells within the wooden shelves.

The children also have a chalkboard stand to play word games and draw on! This provides a fun and social way to learn at the library!

For toddlers, there are fun visual stimuli, such as this magnetic mirror pyramid and a table with movable houses, trees, and people.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Bensenville Library Link

Visit The Bensenville Library Official Website!